Half Serious Poems by Ray Federman

Advice for Older Men

American Dream

The Other Country

Another Failure

The Jupiter Fanfare

In the End

 look  at young women
  in a defined  way
  in the way
 you looked
  at young women
  when you your
 self were young
 that is:  with frank
 determined lust, 
 the total question being 
 what can you do
 to get your self
 between her self

AMERICAN DREAM every morning after breakfast the family gathers in the garage to mumble their daily quota of admiration & veneration to their two chevrolets while on the television an old wrinkled actor out of work pledges allegiance to Budweiser
THE OTHER COUNTRY There are no doors no windows here you enter from the wings where living hurts you drag yourself to the center you crouch under a grey canvas sky and you wait near a dead tree until they come to beat you blue to stone you half-dead then you crawl inside a wooden box to sleep it off your bones dry of marrow dust in your mouth sometimes you hear voices in your head or the croaking of frogs in the morning before the pale sun you perform the gymnastics of the mind doubled-up like a centaur and you wait you wait for the shy moon to roll into a ball before you movement a heresy but one day another man comes who carries his life in his hands he too must perform so the day can be saved even if the moon never returns and laughing is a painful process
ANOTHER FAILURE Last night in total despair he tried to commit suicide by slashing his wrist with an electric razor
THE JUPITER FANFARE Best comment heard from ecstatic astronomer when fragments G & K hit Jupiter: It was massive. But poor fragment Q1 did not make the fanfare it missed Jupiter by 350.000 kilometers & disappeared into space to wander forever in the great darkness at the speed of light
IN THE END Some die heroically on the battlefield others defiantly by jumping off a cliff but many die unexpectedly in their sleep without knowing it while a great number go in fear and cowardliness in hospital wards very few depart unashamedly without resisting but me I want to die just like that without enthusiasm

Copyright © 1996 Raymond Federman